As we wrote recently, owners of devices with Intel Clover Trail CPUs are not able to install Windows 10 Creators Update. But the Anniversary Update version of Windows 10 runs on these devices smoothly. Microsoft confirmed this issue exists because of Intel not supporting these CPUs with the requisite drivers. Microsoft has decided to extend the support of Windows 10 version 1607 until 2023 for these devices.
While extension of support of the older version is not what most users affected by this were expecting, it is better than nothing. Windows 10 version 1607 will receive security patches (but not new features) in the extended support period. This means Windows 10 Creators Update will never be available for devices with Clover Trail CPUs. Microsoft states the following.
We know issues like this exist and we actively work to identify the best support path for older hardware. As part of our commitment to customers, we will be offering the Windows 10 Anniversary Update to these Intel Clover Trail devices on Windows 10, which we know provides a good user experience. To keep our customers secure, we will provide security updates to these specific devices running the Windows 10 Anniversary Update until January of 2023, which aligns with the original Windows 8.1 extended support period.
Computers with Intel's Atom Clover Trail CPUs, which are mostly some all-in-ones, tablets or low end laptops, are incompatible with Creators Update. Initially shipped with Windows 8, they run Windows 10 Anniversary Update perfectly. However, if you try to install Creators Update on your device with a Clover Trail CPU, it will show the following message:
Windows 10 is no longer supported on this PC
Uninstall this app now because it isn't compatible with Windows 10.
The statement mentions some app, however, it is not related to any installed app. This is a result of hardware (or driver) incompatibility, which prevents Windows 10 Creators Update from installing.
This is the first example of hardware that was initially supported by Windows 10 but is now discontinued. In theory, any device which did not ship originally with Windows 10 by default is at risk. This situation can be extremely upsetting for users who were "forced" to upgrade their operating system to Windows 10. They are now essentially being "forced" to upgrade their hardware in order to stay updated. It does not fit the Windows-as-a-Service paradigm, but in fact this was expected. Microsoft is known to drop support for older hardware in modern Windows versions, which often forces the customer to replace their hardware.